Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Halloween is not a festival native to the Philippines, so most Filipinos prefer to observe the more traditional All Saints and All Souls Day on the first two days of November. Similar traditions around the world are La Touissant in France, Dia de Finados in Brazil, Dia de los Muertos in Mexico, Allerheiligen in Germany, etc. In Filipino, it’s called Undas or Araw ng mga Patay (Day of the Dead). Because of the similarities between the two festivals, Halloween and Undas have come to be linked, and even viewed by some as one celebration. Family members from the cities, and even abroad, return to the province to visit their departed relatives at cemeteries, clean their graves, and repaint tombstones. While the gathering is solemn, it has more of a festive, ‘family reunion’ atmosphere with family members bringing flowers, tents to camp overnight, food, drinks, games, sharing stories - like Christmas at a cemetery. It’s meant to show their relatives their family continues to love them even though they have passed away. -

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